Thursday, 17 March 2011

In My Manor

So, in the year we've been living in Streatham, I've been looking fore somewhere to have some decent beer. Finally I think I have found somewhere! Result!
The Manor Arms
In it's previous incarnation it was a pub I wouldn't have walked into in a million years but it's been purchased by Pubco Who Cares Wins Ltd and they've spent about 300 grand on the refurb and I have to say they have done a really nice job. It's a tied lease, who its tied to is not overly apparent but it's gone from shit-hole boozer to wannabe gastro-pub and even that step is welcome in the barren beer wastelands of Streatham.
They have incorporated an open kitchen into the pub which I like when it's done properly. Usually the open kitchen is a side thought, that always looks like it's been added on afterwards and is usually way too small to be productive.

Anyway, I've been in once and looking at the hand pulls I was disheartened almost immediately, there's a choice of Adnams Broadside, Sambrooks Wandle, Sharps Doombar and Purity Gold, not exactly stand out exciting stuff.
The Keg beer is unfortunately the usual suspects Guinness, Heineken, Amstel, Birra Moretti, Hogans Cider although the website say there are more available, hard to see where they might go unless they are planning to rotate them like I do, incidentally the prices are incorrect on the website.
There is still a depressing leaning towards wine with the printed lists in the bar, you get the range of bottled and draught beers(under which the cider comes) but the wine list is enormous in comparison.
All about the beer now boys and girls!

Service? Well when  I went in it was about 5pm and there was one member of bar staff behind the bar and it has to be said that she was very welcoming, chatty and nice. With the draught line up being er...uninspiring I went for one of the American bottles in the fridge. Liberty Ale from Anchor, nice, a good beer and I feel this might become my go-to on visits there. They also had Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, Duvel, Brooklyn Lager and more, so plenty to play with when I go in!
When I did order though, it took them a few minutes to find a bottle opener, as in 5-odd minutes! Really folks that's a basic. When they finally located on it was a bar blade, glad I wasn't ordering wine then!

Food? Didn't try it this time, I knew there was home cooked Lasagne waiting for me at home. Menu looks appetising though and I'll definitely be going in to eat sooner or later.

So, not wanting to slag off a new pub in Streatham with semi decent beer and nice staff I'm going to leave it there! As someone with a lot of experience with these styles of pubs though, I want to take them under my wing and say 'you're doing a great job, now if you did this you'd be perfect'. Little things is all it's going to take, change a handpull to a guest and get something 'ground breaking' or rotate a guest pump, anything interesting really. Those beers are literally all over London and certainly all over Streatham, I want to see something different.
Still, I'm trying to reserve judgement until next time.


Ben Steel said...

I know you went through a lot to bring this post us....

On behalf of those that matter... your persistence is envied :)

Rabidbarfly said...

cheers Ben!

Tandleman said...

Well damned by faint praise? Still as you say, the odd tweak might bring it up to snuff, though I'd happily sup Purity Gold (sparkled as recommended by the brewery of course.)

Anonymous said...

Have you read this?

Pub Diaries said...

Been meaning to try this one. Sounds like they're taking a step in the right direction.

The outer reaches of South London zones 3 and 4 can be sparse... yes Tulse Hill and West Norwood I am talking about you! But i'm cheered by the arrival of Antic in W.Norwood